The serotonin receptor 7 and the structural plasticity of brain circuits

Floriana Volpicelli, Luisa Speranza, Umberto di Porzio, Marianna Crispino, Carla Perrone-Capano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) modulates numerous physiological processes in the nervous system. Together with its function as neurotransmitter, 5-HT regulates neurite outgrowth, dendritic spine shape and density, growth cone motility and synapse formation during development. In the mammalian brain 5-HT innervation is virtually ubiquitous and the diversity and specificity of its signaling and function arise from at least 20 different receptors, grouped in 7 classes. Here we will focus on the role 5-HT7 receptor (5-HT7R) in the correct establishment of neuronal cytoarchitecture during development, as also suggested by its involvement in several neurodevelopmental disorders. The emerging picture shows that this receptor is a key player contributing not only to shape brain networks during development but also to remodel neuronal wiring in the mature brain, thus controlling cognitive and emotional responses. The activation of 5-HT7R might be one of the mechanisms underlying the ability of the CNS to respond to different stimuli by modulation of its circuit configuration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number318
JournalFrontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Issue numberSEP
StatePublished - Sep 12 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • 5-HT7R
  • Brain connectivity
  • Brain development
  • Neurodevelopmental diseases
  • Neuronal cytoarchitecture
  • Serotonin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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